NEW YORK: Benjamin Moore, the paint manufacturer, showed how innovative thinking can bring sponsorship programs to life in new ways by creating a brand extension linked to its affiliation with the Boston Red Sox.

Matt Mattox, vp/group planning director at The Martin Agency, the agency for Benjamin Moore, addressed this topic at the 4A's Strategy Festival in New York.

More specifically, he discussed the development of the Fenway Collection, a limited-edition line of paint that commemorated the 12th anniversary of the brand's partnership with the baseball team.

In the first instance, The Martin Agency knew that Red Sox fans were among the most fervent in the entire game.

"They are passionate; they are loud; they are opinionated," said Mattox. (For more, including further campaign details, read Warc's exclusive report: Agency pushes back to drive marketing ahead.)

"They are very emotionally invested in the team – in a very frightening way, sometimes – but it's a lovely thing. It's a wonderful thing."

"How could we feed – really foster and fuel – this passion that Red Sox [fans] have? How could Benjamin Moore be the brand that actually did that?"

The Fenway Collection drew inspiration from the iconic "Green Monster" – an 11-metre high wall on the left field at Fenway Park, the home of the Red Sox.

Alongside driving the creation of this product, The Martin Agency designed the packaging around it, and even provided guidance about its manufacture.

"You go to a paint store where they program a machine that spits out the pigment in it. There's something about that, to us, [which] felt too mechanical," said Mattox.

"There is something much more magical about the idea of [special Green Monster paint] made in the same factory with the same guy in the same vat that could actually be the stuff that you see on the walls at Fenway Park."

And the new line attracted retailers as well as consumers. "To get them to buy into this, it was really easy because they knew that fans were going to be clamouring for it," said Mattox.

Data sourced from Warc